Random Thoughts About The Game……….



    The Canadiens played a solid road game in their 5-3 victory over the Flyer tonight. Every line contributed to the win while Carey Price is starting to show the solid technical form and confidence he had to start the season ( let’s not forget the poise he had winning a Calder Cup and WJC last year as well).
    Who would have thought before the season started that this talented yet very young and inexperienced team would be tied for first place in the Eastern Conference (technically Ottawa is in first based on more wins). There’s still 22 games to play and anything could happen but you have to like the Canadiens chances to make the play………I don’t think I’m going out on the limb when I make that “bold” statement.
    Here are some game points and rambling thought:

    • Alex Kovalev continues to be a man on a mission this season with another “take the bull by the horns” offensive effort…..he’s certainly is the offensive catalysis for this team and appears well on his way to a +80 point/ 35-40 goal season. It’s hard to believe that the Habs haven’t had a player score 40 goals in a season since Vincent Damphousse scored exactly 40 in the 93-94 season and haven’t had a 80 point man since Mark Recchi (80) and Damphousse (81) did it in the 96-97 season.
    • Another player who has raised the intensity level of his game is Mr. Francis Bouillon. He’s hitting, blocking shots and even rushing the puck more often, something I wish he would do with more often as he is a good skater and has a decent shot as he showed us tonight. Bouillon just seems to shine and be in his element when the games are on the physical side….what’s that expression: “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”………it fits “Franky” like a glove!!!!
    • I know I’m going to be criticized for this suggestion but what the hell……..I know it’s only three games but if Carey Price continues to play steady, confident hockey up until February 26th, wouldn’t it make sense to consider trading Cristobal Huet if another GM offered you a player(s) that would help you in the playoffs. The only problem is that most of the teams with playoff aspirations are pretty much set with their goaltending. Gainey would be hesitant about trading Huet to an Eastern Conference team but would consider a trade to a Western Conference rival. He would have to consider the option especially if a team like Detroit (bad goaltending and injuries have been an issue of late), Colorado (Theodore has been alright but….) or even Nashville make a solid offer for Huet. Must I remind you of the Sheldon Souray situation………food for thought, folks!!!
    • It’s nice to see Saku Koivu come alive the last 2-3 games and show us that he still has some juice left in those legs. The last 2-3 years, Saku appeared to run out of gas at the 50-55 game mark of the season but hopefully he’s caught his second wind……wouldn’t it be great if Gainey could get him a decent scoring winger for a long playoff run.
    • Was it me or did the zebras take over the game and disturb its flow…..some questionable calls for both sides. Since when is a clean body check (ie- Steve Begin’s) called a penalty……I’m telling you that some referees must have been watching too many WJC or European league games and decided to bring the same “non-contact” rules to the NHL…..give me a break!!! Yes, it was the second game of a back to back situation but please let them play hockey.
    • What’s going on AK-46???……..no highlight reel goal tonight??!!! Habs fans are starting to get spoiled with Andrei Kostitsyn and Alex Kovalev’s on ice artistry…..come on guys, I need Utube material here!!!
    • Roman Hamrlik= two victories….. it’s not a coincidence that the the big Czech is back in the lineup and the Habs have given up only 3 goals in the last 2 games. He also is very good at clearing the front of the net so Carey Price or Cristobal Huet can see the shots from the points. I would still like to see Gainey trade for an experienced/proven defenseman to complete the top four on defense.
    • Question for Invisible Danny: How are you enjoying your days in a Flyers uniform? Won’t be much fun if your team doesn’t make the playoff………hey, you could always pull up a chair in the den of your big Philadephia suburban home and watch the Canadiens play in the playoffs.
    • Lastly,…….why do I have a bad feeling about wasting three days off from work to cover the trade deadline and the two day prior to it????? (come to think of it, days off from work are never wasted). I hope I’m wrong but I have a gut feeling the trade deadline will be a dud, maybe not for the entire NHL but for the Montreal Canadiens………..Bob, if you don’t acquire a big name then at least deal with the face-off problem (they were 24/65 or 37%) and/or add another experienced defenseman.